Campbell DNA Project - Goals

The purpose of the Campbell Surname Project is to create statistical links from Campbells around the world and our original ancestors in Scotland or Ireland. The project will endeavor to establish DNA reference signatures for historic Campbell lines and draw DNA inferences to present day Campbell descendants.

The project will also attempt to link early US Campbell immigrant lines. These Campbell lines are generally genealogical brick walls of the early 1700s in one of the original 13 colonies. Special emphasis will be placed on the early Scotch-Irish migration of the Campbells to Pennsylvania, Virginia, and the Carolinas in the 1700s.

Variations of the Campbell surname are welcome. Potential variations include: Caimbeul, Camble, Campbell, Campble, Gamble, Kimball, Kumble, MacCampbell, McCampbell, Miscampbell
Arms of MACCAILEIN MOR
Historic Campbell Lines. There are many Campbell surname branches around the world with heavy concentrations outside of the British Isles in the United States, Australia, and Canada. In many cases it is unclear whether these branches are or aren’t related to Campbell lines in Scotland or Ireland. In addition, some feel that the Campbell Clan may be an amalgamation of genetic lines based upon the Campbell’s prodigious acquisition of land and vassals in Scotland during the period from the 1300s through the 1700s.

However, the Campbell Chiefly lines are fairly well documented. Heraldic studies and Campbell coats of arms managed by the Lord Lyon document approximately 20 major Campbell houses and over 100 cadet or ancillary lines. In most cases, these lines can be traced back to the House of Argyll, but in many cases the exact relationships of between these lines is lost or is partial speculation as one might expect when tracing lines back nearly 1,000 years. A summary of the major branches of the Argyll Chiefly Line are shown in the first link below. Though the second link may be hard to read, the PDF may be expnded in your browser. This link gives you an appreciating for the compexity of the Campbell line that has developed over the last 800 years.
  1. Summary of the Earls and Dukes of Argyll
  2. Expanded Campbell Chiefly Tree with Representative Coats of Arms

The major Campbell Houses for which we have samples or speculated DNA signatures are noted.
 
  • Argyll (*)
  • Duntroon
  • Locknell
  • Inverawe (*)
  • Cawdor
  • Craignish
  • Keithock
  • Kenmore and Melfort
  • Lundie
  • Loundoun
  • Glenurchy/Breadalbane(?)
  • Strachur
  • Ormidale
  • Dunstaffnage
  • Auchinbreck (*)
  • Ardkinglass (possibly via St. Catherines (*))
  • Otter
  • Barbreck (?)

  • Further information about the documented and speculated relationships among these branches is available in my family tree posted on "RootsWeb WorldConnect (Chiefly Campbells)."   
  • Many Campbell wills for the above lines are available from the Scottish National Archives and online (for a small fee) via Scotland's People.  An index to these wills is available here:  Campbell Wills and Testaments in the Scottish National Archives (1513-1800)